An excuse to stay home from work, a way to turn a measly old kiss into cinematic passion, and a longstanding party pooper of outdoor plans, rain (yes, we’re talking about the weather) has been making features since the dawn of time. It’s developed into a love-hate relationship; we’ll use her when it’s to our advantage then complain about her when it’s not, but there’s no denying those little droplets of water that occasionally fall out of the sky are the ultimate aesthetic.
From songs that mention it in their title to ones that simply made a moment out of it in their visuals, we’ve compiled the 5 best music videos that feature rain to celebrate World Rain Day (yup, that’s a thing.)
1. ‘Umbrella’ – Rihanna ft. Jay-Z
Starting off with an absolute tune, the 2007 hit co-written by Jay-Z didn’t win Video of the Year at the MTV Music Video Awards or become the most watched video at the MuchMusic Video Awards for nothing. Not only is the track itself an ode to rain but the video really doubles down on the aesthetic, featuring Rihanna with her aforementioned umbrella frolicking and splashing around. The special effects on this video are admittedly crazy (sparkling raindrops, Rihanna literally bending water with her own might) and that’s what makes it one of the greatest.
2. ‘Delicate’ – Taylor Swift
Off 2017’s reputation, the vulnerable ‘Delicate’ is one of the sweeter songs on the album, referencing Swift’s insecurities about her own fame and how it adds to the fragility of a new relationship. Cue then our star of the show: rain, a long-time symbol of purity, cleansing and vulnerability. Throughout the video, Swift plays out a number of scenarios (dancing through a hotel, pulling faces) as she seemingly becomes invisible, before dancing freely in the rain and returning to her usual, visible self. She also incredibly does the splits on the hood of a car, a move we’ve been trying to replicate since.
3. ‘Rain On Me’ – Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande
The smash 2020 hit seemed to come at the perfect time. A song that celebrates resilience and defiance through tough times, Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande teamed up to bring us a glimmer of hope a few months into the pandemic. Described as a “celebration of tears”, the metaphor rain brings is strong with this one, even going further to highlight Gaga’s struggle with alcohol and depression. From futuristic dance sequences, close up drowning shots and it literally raining daggers at one point, this may be the most our favourite droplets appear in a music video and song ever.
4. ‘Happier Than Ever’ – Billie Eilish
Off her sophomore album of the same name, the 2021 tune grabbed everyone’s attention with its flood of pop-rock emotions at the end, showing an angry and vocal side to Eilish we hadn’t seen before. Much like the song, the music video follows the same pattern with its visuals, showing Eilish in a 1950’s dream home before opening the door to let in a giant wave of water. She then swims outside to the road where it begins to storm, and teenage angst ensues. Capturing every bit of emotion perfectly, sometimes there’s just no better way to heal from something than to scream it all out in the pouring rain. We get it.
5. ‘A Year Without Rain’ – Selena Gomez & the Scene
Bringing you back to 2010 when she was Selena Gomez & the Scene, the second single off Gomez’s album of the same name was a moment all round. Comparing her absence from her lover to living a year without rain, the majority of the video shows Gomez in a desert (and an absolutely beautiful dress, can we just say) before ending with her reuniting with her love and the skies opening up to reveal lots and lots of rain. A romance story that’ll truly never get old.